Overloaded schedules…sometimes they are just unavoidable. However with a little discipline and determination, they can be minimized.
I’ve never been one who always has to to be busy. In fact, I really like my down time. Maybe a little too much!
When my schedule gets overloaded, I panic. Sometimes it’s of my own making like when I can’t say no. Other times events and tasks get thrown onto my calendar by others, mainly my family with their obligations.
When this happens, I notice that it produces several negative effects:
Stress levels increase.
Having an overloaded schedule is usually not a good thing in most people’s lives. Unless you thrive on staying busy from minute to minute, an overloaded schedule can increase your stress levels.
Just a couple of days ago I experienced a few hours of lightheadedness. I realized it was because of all the stress I was feeling over all the things I needed to do. I’m glad it only lasted for a little while, but it was certainly a wake up call that I needed to take better control of my schedule.
When you have committed to too many events or tasks, it’s possible that some will fall through the cracks. Or you may not be able to follow through well because you are too stressed or too busy to do a good job.
Other people are affected.
Often we think our busyness only affects us. That’s definitely not true. There are usually other people involved with the events and tasks we’ve taken on, and when we can’t fulfill all of our commitments, those people suffer the consequences, too.
We all have experienced these negative effects from time to time. The question now is what do we do about it?
Here are a few tips I’ve learned for counteracting an overloaded schedule:
Do, delegate, or delete.
Look over your schedule with a discerning eye. Ask yourself these questions. What can you do right now that would free up your schedule? Is there something you can delegate to someone else to take tasks or activities off your calendar? What is not so important that it can be deleted from your schedule?
Determine your priorities.
Every season of life brings a new set of priorities. Spend your time thinking about what’s most important to you during this season. Then set out to clear your calendar of any events, activities, or tasks that do not help you take care of those priorities.
Just say no.
I’m sure you’ve heard it said many times before, but I’ll say it again. The key to a reasonable and productive schedule is being able to say no. Too often when we say yes to things we really don’t want to do, we end up with an overloaded schedule. Say no to keep your sanity.
Want to go deeper with this and really develop a schedule that works for you? Then fill out the red box found at the bottom of this post and get your FREE copy of The Planning Woman’s Ultimate Guide to a Productive Day. This step by step guide will walk you through a simple process to help you take control of your schedule.